Harvest Celebrations

    Thank you to everyone who decorated the church and barn so we could celebrate Harvest and all the wonderful gifts God has given us. A special thanks to Keith baking our harvest loaf and an extra for communion/lunch. And a big thank you also to Mike, Susie and Rose for hosting our Harvest Lunch in their barn....
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Musing on Mark – outrageous behaviour

Musing on Mark 7, 24 to the end More outrageous behaviour from our saviour! Was Jesus really so rude? This weeks reports tell of Jesus venturing north from Capernaum into the region of Tyre for a secret holiday. The people of this area were formerly bitter enemies of Israel. It seems there is nowhere he can escape from the publics’ attention, though, for He is sought out by a non-Israelite/non-Jewish woman who comes to him seeking healing for her daughter. No Jewish rabbi would allow himself to talk to any women other than a close relative let alone a woman who is 100% Gentile, a foreigner, a pagan, a worshiper of idols (Matthew describes her as a Canaanite, which is a description of her religious beliefs, not her ethnicity). Outrageous behaviour at the time. And pretty brave of the woman to approach a foreigner, a Jew, a former enemy, of a different religion, too. She must have been desperate. (So many come to...
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Musing on Mark – Facing the truth of our true selves

Musing on Mark 7, 1 to 8 then 14 to 15 and 21 to 23 Facing the truth of our true selves I don’t know about you, but I know I can be really good at finding excuses for not challenging my less-than-perfect behaviour. I too find it easy to slip into doing, thinking, saying as everyone else does, fitting in to the culture of our social circle and times. It was no different in Jesus day. People thought that conforming to the religious practices and cultural norms of the times kept them in Gods favour (v8). In this weeks passage we have Jesus telling them (and us) that they were wrong. We all like to wear a metaphorical mask to hide who we truly are, so as not to reveal our inner thoughts – even from those with whom we are most intimate (the wearing of masks in Greek theatre is the origin of our word hypocrite). The hard truth is that...
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Musing on John – Off at a tangent….?

Musing on John 6, 51 to 58 Off at a tangent….? So this is the third week focusing on Jesus ‘I am the Living Bread’ discourse, and I find I have little more to say about it except to note the repetition means that it’s all mega important, and also to note that he spoke it all in the Capernaum synagogue, which must have caused a few heart attacks amongst the traditional Jews there! In our passage today he reiterates that – He lives by the power of the Living Father and that ‘partakers’ in him live by his power, therefor they will live by Gods power. Eat me and you’ll live. Eat and drink and you’ll remain in me and I’ll remain in you. Again reminding us that receiving the bread and wine is a public declaration of our acceptance of him and accepting the Holy Spirit to work within us. I find the simple instructions of Jesus, here and elsewhere, to those who...
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Musing on John – We are what we eat.

Musing on John 6, 35 and 41 to 51 We are what we eat. In 1826 the French author Anthelme Brillat-Savarin wrote his Physiologue du Gout, ou Meditations de Gastronomie in which he said ‘Tell me what you eat and I will tell you what you are’ (in French, of course). Jesus said, ‘I am the bread of life – eat me (v51).’ What did he mean? From the way they responded to him at the time, the people who heard him expected him to ‘do a Moses’ and provide manna like he had when their ancestors were in the wilderness for 40 years., but heavenly provision of food to sustain the physical body wasn’t what Jesus was offering. And they start complaining (v41) and pick up on his claim to have ‘come down from heaven’ (v38, 42). After all some of them grew up with him so how can this be? ‘I am the bread of life’ is one of several ‘I am’ sayings...
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Greeting Cards

Message from Cathy about her greetings cards, helping to raise money for the Friends of St Marys Last year, during the first lockdown, I took my camera with me on my daily walk around the village and collected a series of images of Long Crendon. I was also asked to take photographs of the Open Gardens as part of a project for The National Garden Scheme to help the NGS continue fund-raising during financially challenging times. It occurred to me that I could produce a set of hand made greetings cards using some of the images, particularly since work opportunities were uncertain, and so Flashcat Cards was born! There are a couple of images in the range featuring St Mary’s Church - one of the church itself and another of the wonderful church door. The cards are £2.50 each or 4 for £8.00 and for each card sold featuring the church I will be making a donation to the Friends of St Mary’s....
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Musing on John

Musing on John 6, 1 to 21 Is this just about showing through miracles that Jesus is divine? In contrast to the records of these events in other Gospel, John’s retelling is after a lifetimes reflection. Are there any significant differences? Observations: So the wind must have been against the disciples as they crossed the lake because the crowd could keep up. Mountains around the Sea of Galilee are more like an average hill. A days wages was one dinari, the Greek has Philip saying food would cost more than 200 dinari. The Greek doesn’t say ‘so they sat down’ but ‘the men sat down, so 5000 men, plus women and children (so more like 5000 dinari needed!) Bread was such an essential it was considered ‘sacred’ in the Middle East (still is), so it was unheard of not to pick up the pieces. They collected one basket full for each of the disciples -but no basket for Jesus. Jesus provides a meal - women’s work in his day. He...
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